E3 06: Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team

Under normal circumstances, the hundreds of super-powered critters that make up the Pokemon universe need a human trainer to order them around. Not so with Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Resue Team, a floor-by-floor dungeon crawler that has you duking it out with the cutest monsters in existence.

You start with just one little guy (in our case, it was the fire-breathing Charmander), but by exploring various caves, holes and bits of wilderness, your party can grow to four. Hidden amidst the mobs of unfriendly Pokemon, however, are your goals. The mission we tried wanted us to save a Butterfree's lost baby, so it was unto the dungeon with us.

All you do is walk around, get in stat-heavy fights with other monsters and continue chugging along through the maze. If you're lucky, the creature you just pounded will join your group, letting you team up on other, tougher monsters later on. We'd like to say it was at least a little exciting, but clawing through monotonous levels over and over again is, well, boring as hell.

That's our take, at least. Over the coming months we'll have some more time to sit down with Dungeon and see if the Pokemon, mysteries or dungeons become any more inviting as the game wears on.

May 10, 2006